Notes from the Nest

Hawk Ridge Elementary Family Newsletter

Notes from Principal McCauley, 8/28/22

Good Evening Hawk Ridge Families,

This is Principal McCauley with updates for the week ahead. Tomorrow is our first day of school for all students in 1st through 5th grade. If you are a Pre-K student or Kindergarten student then please reference your section in the Notes from the Nest to review your specific schedule and timeline.

A few key reminders for our families. At Hawk Ridge, we do not allow parents to park and walk their children up to the school. However, during staggered entry, we will allow Kindergarten and Pre-K parents only to walk their children up to the school building because they must sign their children in at the staggered entry table. Otherwise, all children should arrive via carpool, walker or on the school bus. Our school bell rings at 7:15am and you are considered tardy at 7:45am. At Hawk Ridge, I expect all children to be in their classrooms at 7:45am because our day begins promptly at that time. Please be on time tomorrow as there will most likely be many delays in car pool and possibly with buses. This is to be expected as we get started and it will smooth out in the days to come. Please reference all the information about being a car rider, bus rider and walker in the Notes from the Nest so that you have all the necessary information to make it a successful first day of school!!!

Our Open house was a huge success. I loved seeing all of our eager and excited children and parents as you entered the front doors of our school. We are equally as excited and eager to welcome you to the 2022-2023 school year. Please review all the information about transportation in my Notes from the Nest newsletter. If you have any questions, please read and then reach out if you still are unsure. Tomorrow is going to be a wonderful day and we can't wait to see you all bright and early in the morning.

Sleep Tight SOAR students and we will see tomorrow.

Have a great night!!!

~Principal McCauley

Week-At-A-Glance ~ Week 1

Monday, August 29th, Day 1

  • First Day of School
  • Staggered Entry for Kindergarten, Day 1: January, February, March & April ONLY
  • Pre-K Home Visits/Virtual or In-Person Meetings, Day 1

Tuesday, August 30th, Day 2

  • Staggered Entry for Kindergarten, Day 2: May, June, July and August ONLY
  • Pre-K Home Visits/Virtual or In-Person Meetings, Day 2

Wednesday, August 31st, Day 3

  • Staggered Entry for Kindergarten, Day 3: September, October, November, December ONLY
  • Pre-K Home Visits/Virtual or In-Person Meetings, Day 3

Thursday, September 1st, Day 4

  • Kindergarten Open House (ONLY) - 5:30pm-6:30pm
  • Staggered Entry for Pre-K, Day 1
Friday, September 2nd, Day 5:
  • 1st Day for ALL Kindergarten Students
  • Staggered Entry for Pre-K, Day 2
  • Wear Your Favorite Black & Gold Spirit Wear!


Morning Arrival & Afternoon Dismissal

Please review our morning arrival and afternoon dismissal procedures below.

  • Students may enter the building each morning at 7:15am. They should be in their classroom seated and ready for instruction at 7:45am.
  • A warning bell will ring AND the car rider gate will close at 7:40am.
  • The tardy bell rings at 7:45am.
  • Announcements and instruction begin promptly at 7:45am each day! Students arriving at 7:45am or after must be escorted to the front and signed in at the tardy desk by a parent or guardian. Please have your car riders here early!
  • Parking and walking up to drop your child off prior to 7:45am is NOT PERMITTED. All students arriving through the front of the building MUST be dropped off through the car rider line! This is a safety priority!
  • Early dismissals must be signed out by 2:00pm; otherwise you will be asked to wait until the regular dismissal time.
  • Hawk Ridge promotes independence and leadership! Every student enters the building and walks to class independently. There are SEVERAL staff members stationed throughout our campus to assist your child in getting safely to class!

CMS Transportation Timeline

  • Eligible students who are enrolled in CMS by August 4th and have registered for transportation services, should have a stop for the first day of school, Monday, August 29th. (Registered means the student has been entered in PowerSchool and requested transportation via the ‘Student Ridership Form’ by 6:00 PM on August 4th.)
  • Eligible students who have moved, had a change in PowerSchool, and have registered for transportation between August 5th and August 23rd, should have their stop in place for the afternoon bus ride Tuesday, August 30th. This includes new students enrolled within the dates above. (Priority is given to eligible students requesting service to and from home to school, it may take several weeks to process alternate stops/daycare stops at the beginning of the school year).
  • Eligible students who have moved, had a change in PowerSchool, and have registered for transportation between August 24nd and August 29th, should have their stop in place for the afternoon bus ride on Thursday, September 1st . (Priority is given to eligible students requesting service to and from home to school, it may take several weeks to process alternate stops/daycare stops at the beginning of the school year).
  • Eligible students who have moved, had a change in PowerSchool, and have registered for transportation between August 30th and August 31st, and are eligible for transportation should have their stop in place for the afternoon bus ride on Tuesday, September 6th . This includes new students enrolled within the dates above. (Priority is given to eligible students requesting service to and from home to school, it may take several weeks to process alternate stops/daycare stops at the beginning of the school year).
  • Students who have moved, had their new address recorded in PowerSchool on September 1st or later, and are eligible for transportation will have their bus stop set by the Transportation Area office through the EveryInfo program. Schools, transportation offices, and call center staff can access the start dates using the EveryInfo program.

Register for Bus Transportation!

Please use the link below to register your child for bus transportation for the 2022-2023 school year using the CMS Ridership Request Form. Additionally, below is a link to CMS transportation forms. This will provide you with information for Alternate Stop Requests and the Here Comes the Bus APP.

Sign up for Here Comes The Bus

Signing up is EASY! On your desktop computer, you can sign up here. You will need the district code (73877) and your student's ID number (contact your child's school if you don't have it) to sign up. For your smartphone or tablet, download the Here Comes the Bus app from the App Store or Google Play.


  • If you do not have a bus assignment and feel that you should, please contact the front office for assistance. You may need to complete the bus ridership form and this link is provided below. We encourage all parents to take advantage of the opportunity to use school transportation; it is the safest and most reliable from of transportation to and from school.
  • Your child will receive a bus tag with their name, address, school assignment, am/pm bus numbers, stop location, and estimated pickup and drop-off time. Please take note of this important information. In addition, please secure the bus tag to the outside of your child’s backpack, preferably on the top handle. You will also need to know your child’s bus number(s) when calling the office. There may be more than one bus in your neighborhood so please make sure your child is on his/her assigned bus. Please have your child at their stop at least 10 minutes prior to the designated pick-up time. The bus can come as early as 10-minutes prior and 10-minutes after the designated pick-up time.
  • We ask for your partnership as we work through any details related to transportation. Please be flexible with the bus schedule during the first several weeks of school. During this period CMS transportation department will evaluate bus routes. Additionally, if you’ve moved over the summer, please contact the school office so that we can make those changes. If you have any questions please call the CMS Transportation Customer Service Information Line at 980-343-6715.
  • It is important that parents maintain a presence at bus stops in the morning and afternoon and work with each other to ensure student safety at the stop. Parents are also asked to talk with your child about the importance of remaining on the bus if his/her stop is missed. Those students will be returned to Hawk Ridge or be brought back to the stop after communication is established with parents.
  • You will receive a Student Transportation Information Form (Golden) from your child's teacher. This must be completed and returned, ON or BEFORE the first day of school. Any and all changes in transportation must be made in writing (physical signature) in your child's agenda. Changes must be received by the office the morning of the change.
  • Please note that transportation changes will NOT be accepted via email or over the phone!


  • All car riders will enter campus via the driveway beside the fire station (to the right of the fire station in-between the YMCA). The main entrance of the school will be closed. We are NOT permitting any individuals to drive up to the school, park their car and walk the child to the door. You will be permitted to be a car rider, walker, or bus rider only.
  • Car rider drop off begins at 7:15am and concludes at 7:40am.
  • If you are in line at 7:40am you may be asked to drive around and park. You will then be required to walk your child to the tardy desk to have them formally signed in to school.


  • We begin calling students at 2:45pm. Please plan to arrive earlier than 2:45pm to get in line. We move very quickly in the afternoon and in previous years we have concluded around 3:05pm at the latest. We are going to attempt to do the same this week. Please have patience with us during this process.
  • All afternoon car riders will be picked up in the front of the school. You will travel in the car rider line as you did for AM drop off.
  • When you approach the turn into our front driveway, you will be greeted by an adult with a walkie talkie, they will ask for your child's name. We will call their name and assign them a color flag. You will be motioned to travel to that color flag so that you may pick them up where they are assigned.
  • If your child is not present when they are called you may be asked to pull forward to wait for your child outside of the car pool area.
  • You are required to complete a golden rod transportation paper for your child. You are also required to return your child's blue card for the main office.
  • If you have ANY transportation changes then it must be written in your child's agenda with a signed signature that can be brought to the front office. We will not accept transportation changes via email or over the phone. This is a huge safety issue and we appreciate your compliance with this request.


  • If you plan to walk, then you will enter the main entrance of the school on the sidewalk along the fire station. The parking attendant will hold the car pool traffic and permit you to walk across the street. As the parent, that is where you will say goodbye to your child.
  • For afternoon pick-up, you will need to enter by-foot the same entrance and walk along the sidewalk to the front of the school building. You will be greeted by an adult and your child. The carpool attendant will assist with the safe transport of your child across the road.

Back-To-School, August 2022

  • “Take Home” folders will be available during Open House or sent home on the first day of school with several very important forms. Please closely examine this entire packet and return all forms to your child’s teacher no later than Friday, September 2nd.
  • Also available at Open House: Representatives from Transportation, ASEP (After-School Enrichment Program), Cafeteria, PTA, and much more!
  • Kindergarten families will receive their packets at Kinder Open House on Thursday, September 1st or on their first full day of school.
  • The First Day of School is Monday, August 29th.
  • School hours are 7:45 am-2:45 am
  • A separate Open House for Kindergarteners will be held on Thursday, September 1st from 5:30-6:30 pm after classes have been formed.
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Staggered Entry (Your Child Will ONLY Attend School on their designated day that aligns with their birth month):

  • Monday, August 29th -- January, February, March & April ONLY
  • Tuesday, August 30th -- May, June, July and August ONLY
  • Wednesday, August 31st -- September, October, November, December ONLY

Thursday, September 1st (Kindergarten ONLY):

  • Open House 5:30pm - 6:30pm

1st Day of Kindergarten for ALL Students:

  • Friday, September 2nd

Dear Parents of a Rising Hawk Ridge Kindergarten Student

We would like to welcome you and your family to the Hawk Ridge Elementary Community! We look forward to working with you and your child during the coming year.

The schedule for the first week of school will help your child have a good start to this new and exciting adventure. One of our main goals in kindergarten is for each child to achieve his/her greatest potential. Our staggered entry schedule will help us to reach this goal with your child. Each of the first three days of school (August 29th - August 31st) 33.3% of the kindergarten students will report each day. During this special time, we will be assessing the children on communication, motor skills, and early reading and math skills indicators. Our speech clinician may administer a brief speech screening on those days as well. The students will also participate in activities that facilitate awareness and generate excitement for the school year.

Your child’s scheduled staggered entry day is based on their birth month. Please see the schedule below.

  • Monday, August 29th: January, February, March, April

  • Tuesday, August 30th: May, June, July, August

  • Wednesday, August 31st: September, October, November, December

Staff members will be on hand to direct you to the kindergarten staggered entry door. Please help with this process by only bringing your child to school on this staggered entry day. Please arrive by 7:45 am. Afternoon pickup will be from 2:00-2:30 pm. Please be on time, as regular school dismissal will begin at 2:40!

Students will not be assigned a classroom teacher until staggered entry days have been completed. A special Kindergarten Open House will be held on Thursday, September 1st from 5:30pm - 6:30pm. Your child’s classroom teacher will contact you via email to notify you of your child’s class placement. All kindergarten students will begin the full kindergarten schedule in their classroom on Friday, September 2nd @ 7:45 am.

Please remember that all kindergarten students are required to have a physical before starting school. Your physician must fill out the child’s Medical Report Form that includes an up-to-date record of your child’s immunizations. Forms are available in the front office or can be accessed on the CMS website. This information is of utmost importance for your child’s admission to school.

If you have any questions regarding staggered entry, please call the school at 980-343-5927. We look forward to our partnership with your family!


Christy McCauley

Principal, Hawk Ridge Elementary

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Pre-K Back-to School Information

Home Visits

  • Monday, August 29th
  • Tuesday, August 30th
  • Wednesday, August 31st

* All PreK parents will receive a phone call from their assigned teacher to set-up a home visit, virtual or in-person meeting for one of the following dates: August 29th, 30th or 31st.

Staggered Entry
  • Thursday, September 1st
  • Friday, September 2nd
  • Tuesday, September 6th

1st Day of Pre-K

  • Wednesday, September 7th


At-A-Glance ~ Week 2

Monday, September 5th -- NO SCHOOL

  • Labor Day Holiday -- No School for ALL

Tuesday, September 6th , Day 6

  • Staggered Entry for Pre-K, Day 3

Wednesday, September 7th, Day 7

  • 1st Day for ALL Pre-K Students

Thursday, September 8th, Day 8

  • Curriculum Night Pre-K - 5th Grade

Friday, September 9th, Day 9

  • Wear Your Favorite Black & Gold Spirit Wear!

On the Horizon ~ SEPTEMBER

September 1st
  • Kindergarten Open House @ 5:30PM

September 2nd

  • Dine & Dash #1: Marble Slab 3:00pm - 8:00pm

September 5th

  • Labor Day Holiday -- NO SCHOOL

September 8th

  • Curriculum Night @ 6:00pm

September 13th

  • Fall Picture Day
September 16th
  • Principal Coffee @ 8:30 - 9:30

September 19th - 23rd

  • Committee Chair Meeting & Carpool Coverage
  • Fall Book Fair
September 21st
  • Early Release Day (Dismissal @ 11:45am)
September 22nd
  • Bingo Night, General PTA Meeting @ 6:00pm - 7:00pm

September 26th

  • Teacher Workday -- No School for Students
September 27th
  • Progress Reports Go Home


Breakfast is available to all students free of charge.

The application for free and reduced price lunch benefits will be available beginning August 1, 2022. Families are encouraged to complete the application online. Locate the application by going to the CMS website, clicking on the MEALS icon and APPLY for Free/Reduced Lunch. A link to the application is also provided below.

We are excited to return to full capacity in the cafeteria this year and will be working with our students on fostering their independence and leadership skills!

Safety remains a priority, therefore parents/guardians will not be permitted to eat lunch with their students during the school day. This will be revisited at a later time.

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Don't Forget that every FRIDAY at Hawk Ridge is school spirit day. Wear any of the following to show how you SOAR at Hawk Ridge!!! Our colors are Black & Gold. Be as creative as you can and show that school spirit!!!

  • Black & Gold
  • Any Color Hawk Ridge Shirt

Hawk Ridge After School Enrichment Program

There are no longer spaces in our ASEP program! There is a waiting list at this time. You can register and be placed on the waiting list. To register go to the CMS website, click on Departments and then ASEP. The registration link can be found on the left side along with the payment link.

If you have questions please contact Jennifer Swart at or call (980) 343-5927.

PTA Executive Board

PTA Executive Board Contact List


VP at Large-



VP of Communications-

VP of Special Events & Community Outreach-

VP of Volunteer & Staff Support-

Get a Head Start...Pay4School & Spirit Wear

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August 2022 Hawk Ridge PTA News

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Notes from Principal McCauley: August 10, 2022

Welcome to the 2022-2023 school year!!! The time has finally come for us to return to the nest! I hope you have enjoyed a wonderful, relaxing summer filled with fun and family time. We are recharged and ready to start a new school year! I am so delighted that you are part of our amazing Hawk Ridge community. This is going to be an phenomenal year. I welcome and value your positive energy and dedication to excellence in education and look forward to partnering together to help your children SOAR!

This has been a very busy, yet productive summer. Our skilled and devoted staff will return to campus on August 17th where they will be planning and preparing to welcome your child(ren). Our office team is actively registering new families, ordering needed materials, and updating student files. Additionally, our hard working custodial staff has been working tirelessly to prepare all classrooms, main spaces, and hallways so they sparkle and shine when our students arrive. We have been busy and are so excited to have your children in our building with us again!

I am thrilled to begin this school year and to continue building relationships with our families, community members, faculty, and most especially our students. I am committed to providing a warm environment where everyone feels welcome to learn and grow along with identifying academic areas of need to provide necessary support for change. Your partnership and continued support is valued and appreciated beyond measure! Together we will create a joyous and caring community with a common goal of nurturing responsible young leaders who engage in high-levels of learning each and every day.

Please read through this newsletter very thoroughly!!

There is a lot of important information included below and I don't want you to miss anything! I am also asking for your assistance in sharing this newsletter with your neighbors to ensure that no one has missed any information.

This newsletter will be linked on our homepage on the school website. We will NOT be sending letters home in the mail this year. All information will be shared electronically and/or at Open House. Your child's bus tag will be distributed during open house in your child's homeroom class and daily transportation forms will also be completed in person during that time.

If you have any questions or concerns, we will have several information booths set up at our open house event. We hope you will join us for a fabulous "Meet the Teacher" afternoon.

I can't wait to see you and your children here at the nest!

~Principal McCauley

Please come to our Open House,

Good Evening Hawk Ridge Families,

This is Principal McCauley with an important message for the days ahead. As of this moment, you should have heard from your child's teacher via email. If you did not hear from your assigned teacher then please read the following scenarios.

  1. I submitted enrollment paperwork on or after August 22nd. You could still be in the enrollment process. You may not have a teacher assignment until open house or after, so please be patient.
  2. The email could have gone to clutter or junk mail, please check your clutter or junk mail
  3. The email you wrote on the enrollment paperwork was incorrect and needs to be changed or corrected
  4. Check your voicemail because if your email was incorrect or blank then you will receive a phone call.
If you answered all of the above questions and you think there is still an error with your enrollment then please email the school by clicking HERE. If you think your email address was incorrect or need to change this then please email HERE.

When you arrive at our Open House, please go directly to your child's classroom. You will be provided your transportation bus tags and the goldenrod transportation form in the classroom. If you are utilizing car pool then please stop by the information fair after you visit your child's classroom to get your new 2022-2023 car tag. If you have not heard from your assigned classroom teacher by open house then you will head to the media center upon your arrival where that information will be provided to you.

When you have met your child's teacher(s) then please head to the gym for our information fair. The PTA will be selling spirit wear. If you join the PTA and pay for your Class Pack then your child's class could be the winner of the classroom popsicle party!!! Do not delay!!! Our PTA rocks and does so much for our staff and students. Please support them by joining the PTA and paying for your class pack!!!

The return of our staff and teachers on August 17th was epic. We had a wonderful back to school staff meeting, followed by a PTA sponsored lunch provided by Mahana Fresh in Ballantyne Village. It was so yummy!!! The teachers truly felt like royalty. I look forward to partnering with you all to continue the royal treatment of our staff and teachers as we embark on this school year together. We have endured a lot of professional development, staff team building and extensive work in those classrooms. I hope when you arrive to Hawk Ridge on Friday you feel a warm welcome, inviting classroom and an eager teacher with a smile on their face. We are prepared, we are ready and we are excited for you and your child(ren).

See you on Friday!!

~Principal McCauley

What Can Families Be Doing Now?

  • Visit the Hawk Ridge Elementary School Website
  • Sign up for PowerSchool Access

Let's Stay Connected!

~ A Place Where Children Soar ~